Quotes by: Talib Kweli

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Artists look at the environment, and the best artists correctly diagnose the problem. I'm not saying artists can't be leaders, but that's not the job of art, to lead. Bob Marley, Nina Simone, Harry Belafonte - there are artists all through history who have become leaders, but that was already in them, nothing to do with their art.
Talib Kweli
I am not a prisoner of conscious, but people try to make me one sometimes. It is both a gift and a curse. It's a high honour but can create limitations - I have to be fluid.
Talib Kweli
Even an independent label is looking for a hit, they're not looking for a record that's not gonna do well.
Talib Kweli
When Occupy Wall Street happened, I took my money out of Citibank. I already had problems with all the banks - Citibank, Bank of America - but I was kind of just too lazy to take my money out until I saw how Citibank responded to Occupy Wall Street.
Talib Kweli
I not only wanted to showcase lyrical skills but also continue to drop knowledge on the hiphop community. I'm looking to elevate through my music, and through my music I educate.
Talib Kweli
I tour whether I have album out or not. I tour more than any other hip-hop artist.
Talib Kweli
I started rapping because I wanted people to hear what I have to say, I want as many people to hear me as possible, and I do everything in my power to make that pop.
Talib Kweli
My personal take on politics is I deal with social situations and cultural situations in my music and in my life. I have said on record many times that I haven't voted. I'm not the type of person who says, 'I'm never going to vote.' I think it's clear to me that our system has failed us.
Talib Kweli
I don't go into any album with pressing issues. I just try to write songs.
Talib Kweli
There's a lot of activism that doesn't deal with empowerment, and you have to empower yourself in order to be relevant to any type of struggle.
Talib Kweli
You know, I've learned a lot from every person I've collaborated with, from Madlib to Jean Grae and Hi-Tek, to Mos to DJ Quik, to even somebody like Jermaine Dupri. I've taken something important away from every experience.
Talib Kweli
Skip the religion and politics, head straight to the compassion. Everything else is a distraction.
Talib Kweli
The only way for me to be an artist is to be honest in my craft. If I veer from that, I'm not giving the investors what they want. Sometimes it's my job as an artist to know what I want to do, even when the fans tell me different.
Talib Kweli
People consider Black Star a great album, and I think it's a classic album. But the fact is, both me and Mos Def have made better albums since Black Star.
Talib Kweli
I'm not looking to set a standard... but, I believe I have offered a challenge to others with my work.
Talib Kweli
If I'm performing with a DJ, it's all on me to draw the energy. I like the camaraderie of a band.
Talib Kweli
My fondest memories were watching the Beastie Boys get prepped to come on stage. They had a lot of antics and they play a lot of basketball... then they were giving out cameras to the crowd, and performing from the bleachers. The most important thing I learned was that you control your crowd, not the other way around.
Talib Kweli
You make knowledge relevant to life and you make it important for children to learn things that will really relate to things going on in their lives, and not abstract.
Talib Kweli
There just needs to be a gay rapper. He doesn't have to be flamboyant, just a rapper who identifies as gay - who's better than everybody. Unfortunately hip-hop is so competitive that in order for fringe groups to get in, you gotta be better than whoever's the best.
Talib Kweli
There are staples to my show. I have to be conscious about switching things up because I know people who saw me last year will say, 'He did that last time.' But if certain things work, they work.
Talib Kweli
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